Canada resumes ‘random’ Covid testing for visitors

Canada resumes ‘random’ Covid testing for visitors

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Canada has responded to rising Covid cases by reintroducing random COVID tests for fully vaccinated international arrivals.

The tests, which were stopped on June 11, resumed on July 19 and are conducted outside of airports, either at testing provider locations, pharmacies or by a virtual appointment for a self-swab test.

Visitors arriving by air to the four major Canadian airports – Vancouver, Calgary, Montreal and Toronto -who are selected for mandatory free-of-charge testing will receive an email within 15 minutes of completing their customs declaration.

The email will contain information to help them arrange their test with a testing provider in their region.

If they test positive, they must go into isolation for 10 days.

Travellers who do not qualify as fully vaccinated, unless exempt, must continue to test on Day 1 and Day 8 of their mandatory 14-day quarantine.

A Government of Canada release said: “Moving testing outside of airports will support testing for travellers arriving by air while still being able to monitor and quickly respond to new variants of concern, or changes to the epidemiological situation.”

“Border testing is an important tool in Canada’s detection and surveillance of COVID-19 and has been essential in helping us slow the spread of the virus.

“Data from the testing program are used to understand the current level and trends of importation of COVID-19 into Canada. In addition, these data have and continue to inform the Government of Canada’s safe easing of border measures.”

All travellers must continue to use ArriveCAN (free mobile app or website) to provide mandatory travel information within 72 hours before their arrival in Canada, and/or before boarding a cruise ship destined for Canada, with few exceptions. It is the fastest, easiest and most secure way for travellers to show they meet public health requirements.

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